Japan’s Okinawa area suspended the usage of Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccine on Sunday after one other contamination was noticed, the native authorities mentioned.
It comes a day after the Japanese well being ministry mentioned it was investigating the demise of two males who obtained photographs from tainted Moderna batches — although the reason for their demise is unknown.
The Okinawa prefecture, in southern Japan, mentioned Sunday’s vaccination programme was partially postponed.
“We’re suspending the usage of Moderna’s Covid-19 vaccines as overseas substances had been noticed in a few of them,” it mentioned in an announcement.
The heaps affected by the contamination noticed in Okinawa on Saturday are completely different from the 1.63 million doses suspended after the 2 deaths, in keeping with native media reviews.
That suspension got here after the well being ministry mentioned two males, aged 30 and 38, died in early August after getting their second Moderna doses.
These doses had been drawn from considered one of three batches suspended by the federal government on Thursday after a number of vials had been discovered to be contaminated.
The ministry mentioned nevertheless that it was investigating the reason for demise and it’s unknown presently if there’s a causal hyperlink with the vaccine.
“Right now, we don’t have any proof that these deaths are attributable to the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, and you will need to conduct a proper investigation to find out whether or not there’s any connection,” Moderna and its Japanese distributor Takeda mentioned in a joint assertion on Saturday.
The character of the particles discovered within the vials, which had been manufactured by a Moderna contractor in Europe, can be not recognized but.
“The vials have been despatched to a professional lab for evaluation and preliminary findings will likely be obtainable early subsequent week,” Moderna and Takeda mentioned.
The contractor, Spanish pharmaceutical agency ROVI, mentioned in an announcement Thursday that it was investigating the reason for the contamination within the batch, which was solely distributed in Japan.
It added that the problem could have originated on considered one of its manufacturing strains.
Round 44 % of Japan’s inhabitants has been absolutely vaccinated, because the nation battles a file surge of coronavirus circumstances pushed by the extra contagious Delta variant.
Greater than 15,800 folks have died from Covid-19 in Japan, and enormous components of the nation are beneath strict virus restrictions.